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Navy & Marine Corps Medical News
August 11, 2000
Navy and Marine Corps Medical News (MEDNEWS) is a weekly
compendium of news and information contributed by commands
throughout the Navy medical department. Information contained
in MEDNEWS stories is not necessarily endorsed by Navy Bureau of
Medicine and Surgery (BUMED) , nor should it be considered
official Navy policy.
BUMED distributes MEDNEWS to Sailors and Marines, their
families, civilian employees and retired Navy and Marine Corps
families. Further distribution is highly encouraged.
Stories in MEDNEWS use these abbreviations after a Navy
medical professional's name to show affiliation: MC - Medical
Corps (physician); DC - Dental Corps; NC - Nurse Corps; MSC -
Medical Service Corps (clinicians, researchers and
administrative managers) . Hospital Corpsmen (HM) and Dental
Technician (DT) designators are placed in front of their names.
Contents for this week's MEDNEWS:
- Naval Dental Center Southwest personnel give 'a hand up'
- New clinic commissioned
- Great Lakes nurse brings pet therapy to patients
- Virtual Naval Hospital receives award
- Navy family medicine program graduates ten, welcomes six
- TRICARE question and answer
- Anthrax question and answer
- Healthwatch: Getting the upper hand on "snack attacks"
Headline: Naval Dental Center Southwest personnel give 'a hand
Sailors from around San Diego volunteered their time to 'Give
a Hand Up not a Hand Out' to homeless veterans at this year's
13th annual National Stand Down held July 21-23. This included
more than 60 people from Naval Dental Center Southwest who
volunteered their time and dental services to the veterans.
Dental services were provided on board two state-of-the-art
Mobile Dental Units. This marked the seventh year in a row that
the Naval Dental Center has deployed the Mobile Dental Units in
support of Stand Down.
Rear Adm. (select) Dennis Woofter, DC, commanding officer of
Naval Dental Center Southwest, and Capt . Joseph C. Whitt, DC,
Director of Clinical Services, visited the site on Saturday
morning. They were very impressed with the entire operation and
that so many people had volunteered their time on a weekend to
help those less fortunate.
"I am happy to volunteer my time to give something back to
the people who really need it," said DT2 Pedro Perales, LPO of
the Fleet Liaison Department.
The Vietnam veterans of San Diego initiated Stand Down in
1988 with help from local military, veterans' organizations,
governmental support agencies and civic groups. The concept was
picked up by other cities in 1990 and, last year, was replicated
in 120 cities nationwide. Participants in Stand Down receive
food, clothing, shelter and counseling for three days in a
"safe" environment. It was an opportunity for them and their
families to regain their self-respect and connect with services
that can help them on the road to recovery and off the streets.
More than 500 homeless veterans received assistance during this
year's Stand Down.
Headline: New clinic commissioned
QUANTICO, Va. - The new Naval Medical and Dental Clinic at
Marine Corps Base Quantico was commissioned July 25 during a
dedication ceremony that took place in front of the new $19.2
The new clinic will replace the existing 61-year-old facili
and consolidate medical and dental services under one roof. The
grand opening for the 102,000 square foot building will take
place August 14.
The new clinic features a drive-up pharmacy window,
transitional rooms for clinicians and administrative support
personnel, and additional technologically advanced diagnostic
equipment. The new clinic will continue the tradition of
providing outstanding health care to Marines, Sailors, their
families, and other eligible beneficiaries at Quantico, the
Crossroads of the Marine Corps.
Headline: Great Lakes nurse brings pet therapy to patients
By Lt . Youssef H. Aboul-Enein, MSC, Naval Hospital PAO
GREAT LAKES, 111. - Dealing with 56,000 recruits a year,
Great Lakes Naval Hospital must care for a small percentage of
recruits who suffer from psychological stress brought about by
separation from home, a new environment and new
responsibilities. For most, a few days of recuperation in the
hospital and counseling enables the recruit to return to
To assist in the recovery of patients, Lt . David Senello, N
researched and proposed the pet therapy program, which is now
fully operational. Now dogs, cats and birds make rounds to
bring joy and physiological well-being to children, recruits and
family members at Naval Hospital Great Lakes .
"Pet therapy is known by many different names including
animal assisted therapy and human-animal bonding," said Capt .
Deborah Gray, NC, director for nursing services. "Since 1942
when it was first introduced, this form of treatment has been
proven a successful adjunct to traditional medical, nursing and
physiological interventions and helps facilitate the health and
well-being of patients, families, and staff."
"A request for pet therapy is initiated by a consult written
by a medical officer," said Senello. The consult ensures that
patients are not allergic to animals or have a fear associated
with a certain pet. It also designates where the pet therapy is
to take place.
Owners selected to participate in the program are screened
and their pets receive an added benefit of a full examination by
the base veterinary corps officer.
"The command Red Cross volunteers are responsible for
orienting pet owners and training them as hospital volunteers, "
The interaction between the pet, the pet owner and patient is
holistic medicine in practice and promotes well-being on the
Medical literature is filled with examples of pet visitation
lowering blood pressure, alleviating loneliness and decreased
length of stay and use of pain medication.
"We are proud to incorporate this form of therapy at our
command and the pets and volunteers are a welcome addition to
the naval hospital," said Capt . Elaine Holmes, Naval Hospital
Great Lakes commanding officer.
Headline: Virtual Naval Hospital receives knowledge award
From Naval Medical Information Management Center
BETHESDA, Md. - The Virtual Naval Hospital (VNH) website was
awarded the Department of Navy Knowledge Sharing Award during
the opening ceremony of the Department of Navy Knowlegde Fair
2000 held at National Navy Medical Center August 1st.
"This award is evidence of an effective partnership and a
successful deliverable to the Navy from a dedicated team of
champions at the University of Iowa College of Medicine and
Bureau of Medicine and Surgery with Naval Medical Information
Management Center project support," said Capt. Richard S.
Bakalar, head of the naval telemedicine business office.
VNH is a partnership between Navy Medicine and the University
of Iowa College of Medicine. The goal of the VNH is to create
and maintain a digital library, a medical reference tool for
primary care providers and a health promotion tool for Sailors
and Marines worldwide. On-line since 1997, VNH provides
assistance as a medical planning tool for medical, humanitarian
and combat missions by sharing knowledge across the Navy.
The 80 most common medical problems and 25 health promotion
topics were used for the baseline needs assessment and
foundation for the design of VNH. This information along with
supporting medical information from subject matter experts was
digitized and organized into a problem-based, user-friendly
format accessible from the Internet and on a CD-ROM.
Since then, VNH has been revised, expanded and enhanced on a
regular basis . Today, the VNH is managed by Naval Medical
Information Management Center and hosted from a server on the
University of Iowa campus .
Since its inception there has been a six-fold increase in the
number of users visiting the website per month, an eight-fold
increase in pages read, and the medical content has increased
VNH now has a survey to access its use. To participate in
the survey go to the following sites to fill out the survey and
view the results: 1 92 . 18 9 . 23 6 . 7/vnhsurvey/homevnh . html .
http://192.189.236. 7/vnhsurvey/ re suits /menu . html
Headline: Navy family medicine program graduates ten, welcomes
By Judith Robertson, Naval Hospital, Public Affairs Officer
BREMERTON, Wash. - The Puget Sound Family Medicine Residency
program, the teaching arm of the Family Practice Department at
Naval Hospital Bremerton, graduated ten family physicians and
welcomed six new interns into the ranks recently.
Guest speaker for the ceremony, retired Navy Capt . Larry
Johnson, MC, told his audience that although the Navy's Family
Medicine program is small, their presence is felt throughout the
"The Navy employs approximately 450 Family Physicians. One
third of them are OCONUS, one third are deployed, and one third
CONUS . No other group of Navy physicians has that record, "
The 30-year veteran of Navy medicine added, "your training is
strenuous, but second to none. If you are assigned with a new
civilian FP grad, you will find out that your knowledge and
skill sets will be significantly greater. Not because they are
not as bright as you, but the quality of the training experience
in the Navy far exceeds that of your civilian counterparts. The
reputation you take with you is one of excellence within the
community and nationwide."
Headliine: TRICARE question and answer
Question: Will a pre-existing condition be a factor before
being accepted into Prime?
No. Pre-existing conditions will not disqualify you from
enrolling in Prime.
Headline: Anthrax question and answer
Question: Will Reserve component personnel be required to
take a full series of shots?
Answer: Yes. Full immunization with anthrax vaccine adsorbed
requires six doses administered over 18 months to complete the
primary series. This is the schedule licensed by the Food &
Drug Administration (FDA) . It is DoD policy to adhere to this
vaccination schedule. Guardsmen and Reservists with less than 18
months until separation or retirement from military service will
be treated as in any other vaccination program that is required
to prepare them for deployment. They will be required to begin
the vaccination series unless medically deferred. The services
will not require completion of the six-shot vaccination series
for Reserve component members once they leave military service.
Headline: Healthwatch: Getting the upper hand on "snack
Everyone has an appetite for certain foods . But when that
appetite becomes extreme, it's called a craving. People often
have so many pressures in their lives, and cravings are so easy
to satisfy, that their intention to avoid fatty or sugary snacks
is the first healthy habit to surrender.
It doesn't have to be that way. Here are some tips for
fighting off those fattening "snack attacks:"
- Intense cravings can result from mood swings or stress .
Eating only masks the symptoms. Try discovering what might
really be pushing you to seek solace in food. Addressing
that problem might reduce the craving for an unhealthy snack.
- If you normally crave salty foods, eggs, or meat products,
avoid alcohol or sweets. One usually leads to the other.
- Stock the pantry and refrigerator with plain popcorn,
whole-grain bagels, unsalted pretzels, rice cakes,
unsweetened fruit juices, fresh fruits and vegetables, plain
low-fat yogurt, and low-fat, low-sodium cheeses. Use salt
substitutes, if you need to.
- Bring a naturally sweet fresh fruit, such as grapes or a
pear, to work for your break, rather than buying candy from
- Choose snacks rich in dietary fiber: fresh fruits with
edible seeds (berries) or edible skins (apples or preaches),
raw vegetables, or whole-grain breads or bagels (whole wheat
or rye) .
- Watch out for certain kinds of "trail mix" and some
granolas. They may be laden with sugar and fat but
advertised as "healthy snacks." Read labels carefully.
- Bake or buy low-sugar, low-fat, whole-grain bran muffins or
zucchini bread. They'll zap just about any "snack attack."
Most of us have come to depend on processed or packaged
foods, or foods derived from high-fat, high-cholesterol animal
products rather than grains, fresh vegetables and fruits, and
legumes (beans, peas and lentils) . It's a hard legacy to
escape, especially when snacking. But armed with the assurance
of improved health, you can remedy the "snack attacks" and snack
Comments about and ideas for MEDNEWS are welcome. Story
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